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Pages from an Editor's Sketchbook (1887)


"Pages from an Editor's Sketchbook"
excerpt from "August Spiesâ Auto-Biography; His Speech in Court, and General Notes."
Chicago: Nina van Zandt, January 1887; pp. 22-35.

Chapter-length excerpt from the little known memoir of August Spies, one of five revolutionary socialist leaders judicially murdered in the aftermath of an 1886 bombing at Haymarket Square in Chicago. The German-born Spies (name pronounced "SPEES") was editor of the Chicagoer Arbeiter-Zeitung, and a member of the so-called "anarchist" left wing of the Socialist Labor Party. The bulk of this document deals with Spies' visit to an Ohio coal mining strike in 1884 and is an excellent primary source in the social history of the 19th Century American labor movement. Spies recounts his speech to striking miners and declares: "it was not socialism that inflamed these men, for when I spoke of socialism to them, they became quiet and calm and interested; it was the words of the capitalist, their master -- it was the teaching of capitalism that incited them almost to madness! Socialism has nothing in it that incites to violence and bloodshed; these qualities are only peculiar to the doctrines of capitalism, doctrines based upon and maintained by force."

Edited by Tim Davenport for 1000 Flowers Publishing, Corvallis, OR.
Uploaded by him to in January 2012, no copyright claimed.
Published in the United States prior to 1923, public domain.

Collection folkscanomy_politics; folkscanomy; additional_collections


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Folkscanomy Politics: Political Systems, Government and Democratic Organization
by Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee. Michael Harrington, editor.